Labour Update: CUPE Strike Action

PVNC Board Logo

Oct. 28, 2022

Dear Parents and Guardians, 

As you have likely heard in the news, the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) is in a legal strike position as of Thursday, Nov. 3, 2022. Strike actions can include a partial or full-withdrawal of service.

We are very concerned about the possibility of labour disruption and know that parents/guardians share that concern.

Peterborough Victoria Northumberland and Clarington (PVNC) Catholic District School Board employs about 800 CUPE members, representing support staff such as custodians, maintenance staff, secretaries, educational assistants, early childhood educators, learning commons specialists, paraprofessionals and central IT employees among others.

Central negotiations between CUPE, the province and the provnical trustee associations continue next week and we remain hopeful that an agreement can be reached soon that will avert disruption to our students and families.

To help parents/guardians in their planning, we are sharing today that IF a provincial agreement is not reached next week, and IF there is a full-withdrawal of service by CUPE employees, all schools in our Board will be CLOSED to students and all students will transition to remote learning at home. 

Please know, we do not make this decision lightly and we understand the impact this will have on families. Without CUPE workers on-site, however, we simply cannot ensure safe conditions for all students and staff. This course of action is based on the following considerations:

  • supervision of students;
  • medical support and care for all students;
  • safe operation of water and sanitation systems, including required water flushing;
  • conditions of school buildings and classrooms, and
  • overall safety and security.

CUPE must give school boards five days’ notice before taking any strike action. At this point we are simply trying to be proactive and give families as much notice as possible to prepare for all contingencies. Again, we remain hopeful that an agreement can be reached next week and that a strike can be averted.

We will continue to share further updates as they are available directly with families and staff.